Piotr Zielinski struck twice and assisted another as Liverpool’s poor start to the season continued with a humbling 4-1 defeat at Napoli in their Champions League opener.
Jurgen Klopp’s side have underwhelmed in their first six Premier League games, winning just twice, and were behind after only five minutes in Naples following Zielinski’s penalty.
Alisson denied Victor Osimhen’s spot-kick just 13 minutes later, but Napoli were 3-0 up at half-time after strikes from Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa and Giovanni Simeone, the latter on his Champions League debut.
Zielinski finished past Alisson again after the interval before Luiz Diaz responded with a bending effort – a mere consolation goal for Liverpool in the Group A encounter.
Osimhen rounded Alisson before striking the post with just a minute played, but Napoli were soon ahead after James Milner handled Zielinski’s effort inside the area.
Zielinski found the bottom-left corner from the resulting penalty and another spot-kick arrived soon after when VAR sent referee Carlos del Cerro Grande to check a Virgil van Dijk foul on Osimhen, who was then denied by Alisson diving to his right.
Van Dijk cleared off the line with the goal gaping for Khvicha Kvaratskhelia but Napoli doubled their lead when Zielinski teed up Anguissa, who fired under the onrushing Alisson.
Alex Meret tipped away a goal-bound Van Dijk header before Simeone, on for the injured Osimhen, turned Kvaratskhelia’s driven cross into an empty net on the stroke of half-time.